Researchers from the Ruhr-University Bochum, in Germany, recently uncovered that video games might be helping kids to become better learners.
Specifically, they say that video games might help them to learn faster and boost their brain activity by enabling them to better analyze situations, to generate new knowledge, and to categorize facts.
The study involved only 17 students who played video games for roughly 15 hours in one week and 17 children who rarely spent any time during the week playing video games. The two groups of children were asked to complete a learning task.
Researchers say that their results indicate that for the kids who spent more time gaming, that they performed better than those who spent less time gaming.

The results from their study have been published in the journal Behavioral Brain Research.

And their research adds to previous study in this area that has also suggested that playing video games might offer some benefit in the way of boosting brain power and helping to improve things like visuospatial and attention skills, and more. But despite the variety of possible benefits that can be reaped from time spent playing, there have also been studies suggesting that excessive video game playing can negatively impact brain health as well; depending on how a person plays.
For those who think that there is no good that can come from playing video games however, they might be surprise to learn the truth.
Multiple benefits are suggested to be linked to game-playing, researchers say that games might help to improve things like reading skills, possibly even help to reduce pain, limit trauma, improve concentration, and more.
When it comes to the possibility of video games being linked to changes in the hippocampus, which is the region of the brain that is believed to play a key role in learning and memory, the researchers from the recent study in Germany say that perhaps one day video games might provide a useful tool for them to try and combat memory loss and a decline in memory performance for people who need help.
 

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I'm not too surprised. I think games in general, video games or others are incredibly helpful in improving learning and problem solving skills.
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   1yr ago
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Yes...
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   1yr ago
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I believe the research conclusion in Arch AngeL's post is correct, and I believe that OnWindowLy is correct also in suggesting that the learning boost observed applies for play in general, and not just to the playing of video games, specifically.
An interesting book to consider on this topic is Peter Gray's Free to Learn. It suggests that play isn't just good for learning, but that it is the means by which children learn naturally. As an evolutionary psychologist, Gray makes the interesting observation that all mammals play, and that they play in such a way as to practice the skills that will be needed to function in adulthood.
If Gray is correct in his conclusions, which are far reaching, it would illustrate just how far off course we've drifted in our thinking about learning, especially in education circles, where one can observe a clear culture of anti-play in progress. Among educators, play is often viewed as idleness, distraction or as diverting attention away from what is most essential. From this point of view, play becomes an impediment to learning. It becomes seen as a behavior to be altered rather than appreciated.
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   1yr ago
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   12mo ago